If you're on disability and in need of some supplementary income, you should feel at ease knowing that there are plenty of work-from-home jobs for the disabled available. Each of the jobs listed in this article can supply you with the side income you're looking for. Now, before diving into the jobs themselves, let's take a moment to look at a few skills you'll need to succeed as a home-based worker.
GENERAL REQUIREMENTS NEEDED TO WORK FROM HOME
Regardless of the job, there are a few "must haves" for any line of work you decide to go into:
Basic Computer Literacy
So long as you have basic computer skills like emailing, surfing the internet, and writing a document, you should be fine.
Good Command of English
It's perfectly okay if English isn't your native tongue but you should be able to understand, speak, and write English with ease.
Working for yourself means not having a boss to look over your shoulder which means it's up to YOU to keep regular working hours and stay motivated!
LEGITIMATE WORK-FROM-HOME JOBS
1. Freelance Writer
Most likely, it'll take a while to get the ball rolling on these sites but once you get a few gigs under your belt and start to build a reputation, you'll have an easier time landing gigs and charging higher rates. Here are a few pointers to get started…
First, you'll need a portfolio to catch the eye of prospective clients. If you don't have one already, offer to write a few articles for free until you do. Your portfolio should also cover a variety of subjects to show you're versatile.
Second, make sure to personalize each application letter just like you would with a resume. Cookie-cutter, cut/paste applications won't get noticed.
Third, request that the client leave you a good review when completing a gig (super important!)
Fourth, apply to recently posted jobs before others do!
For more information about becoming a freelance writer, check out this post.
You can also write for content writing services like Textbroker, iWriter, and HireWriters. While pay rates aren't great, you'll probably have an easier time making consistent money than freelancing on Upwork (at least initially).
2. Customer Service Representative
Are you outgoing and energetic? Are you a good listener and problem-solver? Can you multi-task and think on your feet? If you exhibit these qualities, customer service may be right for you. As a customer service representative, you'll help answer customers' products and billing-related questions, take reservations, supply technical support and other services over the phone or via internet chat. And if you're bilingual, even more opportunities will be available to you. For a detailed breakdown of the job, click here.
There are several companies that offer customer service jobs for people with disabilities including Convergys, Arise Virtual Solutions, LiveOps, and government-sponsored MyEmploymentOptions, and NTI (National Telecommuting Institute — check out my review HERE).
3. Medical Transcriber
Medical transcription is a popular home-based job that involves converting doctor's voice recordings into text format. But unlike other jobs mentioned in this article, medical transcription requires extensive training, sometimes up to two years depending on the country. But at this point, it's debatable whether it's worth your time and money as the profession is slowly being phased out as more doctors now use voice recognition software instead (think something like Apple Siri).
Still, there are plenty of non-medical transcription jobs available which you could pursue (without needing much training) such as becoming a law transcriber for an online service like SpeakWrite.
Can you speak AND write fluently in at least one other language besides English? If so, you might try your hand at translation. And if you have expertise in a field like law, you'll likely find even more jobs. The more specialized the subject matter, the more work opportunities. Check out Proz and Translators Cafe to get started.
5. Online Tutor
If you have at least a bachelor's degree and good communication skills, online tutoring may be a good fit for you. Depending on the company, you'll probably be asked to take a screening exam to test your writing ability and knowledge of the subject you'd like to teach. Keep in mind, some subjects are in more demand than others, especially math, finance and science-related ones. Here are few companies to look into: Tutor, e-Tutor, and eduboard.
6. Etsy/eBay Seller
Do you like making crafts with your hands? Things like jewelry, pottery, or teddy bears? Why not try selling your work online through platforms like Etsy or eBay? Once you buy supplies and create your products, you can make them available for sale online! But be forewarned as it can take a fair amount of work to built up residual income from your efforts. Check out this post for details.
Whatever you do, don't get involved with work-from-home craft "assembly" jobs, where companies require you to buy materials through them to assemble and send back in exchange for payment. Oftentimes these companies reject the work you submit. Why? Because they place unrealistic quotas and deadlines which no one could possibly meet and you'll likely wait forever for a check that won't ever arrive.
If you still want to make money assembling items, stick with a reputable company like TaskRabbit instead.
I choose not to place "DIS", in my ability. – Robert M. Hensel
7. Survey Taker
Every year, billions of dollars are spent on market research to understand consumers in every area of life from food and travel to cars and gadgets. One way these companies gather data is by conducting surveys and that's where you come in… You get paid simply by completing surveys online!
But here's the truth...while it may be fun in the beginning, the monotony of survey-taking may test your patience after a while. And you'll need to complete a TON to make anything more than pocket change. Still, it's a viable option, just make sure not to fall for the dozens of survey scams out there. For more details, read this post.
8. Affiliate Marketer
This is my personal favorite work-from-home job for the disabled and it's what I currently do. As an affiliate marketer, you get paid commission for selling a company's product through a website. In time and with enough effort, you can build a business that even pays you while you're sleeping!
And here's the kicker...
You won't have the stress of dealing with unfriendly customers like you might in a customer service job.
You won't have to look for the next gig as soon as one's ended like you would as a freelance writer, transcriber or translator.
You won't have to contend with inventory, packaging, and customer returns like you would as an Etsy/eBay seller.
You won't have to suffer from boredom after completing the umpteenth survey as a professional survey taker.
Instead, you can build a side business around something you actually enjoy. See below for more information...
Of course, there are other work-from-home jobs for the disabled but the ones listed in this article provide more opportunities than most for homebound individuals. So why not give one or more of these jobs a try!
Have you ever held a work-from-home job in the past? How did it go? Leave your comments below!